Monday, 5 March 2007


This is a piece I made as part of Myrna Giesbrecht's Self Expressions class at Quilt University. The brief was to take something you disliked and turn it into a piece about A4 size. My dislikes included a hideous printed fabric which I bleached to get rid of the awful combination of colours, used as the snake fabric; a dyeing drop-cloth for the background; and snakes which I really do not like though I can appreciate their beauty ( I did encounter one recently which I almost liked; though I couldn't quite bring myself to handle it I did touch its skin which felt silky).
The snake fabric is covered with silk tulle, hand-dyed, and gold net; couched hand-dyed rayon/metallic thread outlines it and the binding (stops the snake from wriggling out of the piece.)

This is the final piece from Myrna's class. The brief was to produce something that summed up where I was now.

Snakes and Ladders seemed an appropriate theme - I find the whole process of creating something full of stops and starts, highs and lows. In this piece I was more intent on snake symbolism so not all the snakes are negatives. The two large snakes are the snake that dreams and the snake that explores. Smaller snakes include eternity or going round in circles (I always find it difficult starting); tying itself up in knots (I always hit that one sooner or later) and doubting (the question mark). The pair of snakes is based on the caduceus - the snake that gives life and the snake that takes life away; and the snake at the bottom is the one that when you've just started to get somewhere takes you back to where you started. The ladders are just ladders.

I started by weaving a grid of hand-dyed fabrics, then covered up areas with hand-dyed organzas and chiffons, stitching the snake and ladder outlines and cutting back the shapes to the stitching, which I then outlined in satin stitch.

The quilt still has to be finished - suffered RSI after doing some of the satin stitch (trying to keep turning while stitching the curves rather than doing it the proper way (that'll learn me). Needs quilting and binding/finishing...

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